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Army March 4, 2010
TRUCKS competing in the medium to
heavy capacity component of Project
Land 121 have completed their testing
phase in the tender process.
Twenty-four vehicles in five cat-
egories were comprehensively tested by
more than 60 Army drivers on public
roads and military training areas over six
The medium/heavy component rep-
resents about 2000 trucks and modules,
with tenderers asked to provide a range
of platforms for evaluation.
Thales' Bushmaster Utility, MAN
Military Vehicle Systems Australia's HX
series and Mercedes-Benz Australia/
Pacific's Zetros and Actros series have
been identified by Defence as the con-
tenders to proceed to the next stage.
Phase 3 of Project Land 121
(Overlander) is the largest land project in
the current Defence Capability Plan.
By Sgt Brian Hartigan
A GERMAN Army contingent travelled half
way around the world in February to pit men and
machines against the elements in the harshest envi-
ronments they could find.
Arriving in Australia aboard two giant Russian
Antanov An-124 cargo planes, the contingent brought a
range of new vehicles and equipment to Australia to test
them in hot, dry and humid summer conditions as part
of the vehicles' acceptance-into-service testing.
Some of the vehicles were so new they had less than
one hour on their clocks after being delivered to the
Antanovs direct from their assembly line.
Key among the vehicles being tested were two Boxer
multi-role armoured vehicles -- serial numbers 1 and 2 --
similar in looks to an ASLAV, except 3m wide, 8m long
and more than twice the weight of the Aussie vehicle.
Other machines were the smaller tracked Wiesel 2
command-post vehicle and a Bv 206 S command-post
variant, as well as a Mikado UAV reconnaissance system.
More than 100 personnel from the German Army, its
armaments procurement agency and German industry
representatives deployed with the equipment for the tri-
als that were scheduled to last more than a month.
The extreme hot and dry conditions at the Woomera
Test Range in South Australia and hot, humid condi-
tions near Townsville were thought to be sufficiently
harsh climatic conditions to test the equipment.
German contingent spokesman Lt-Col Stefan Heydt
said the trials were "meant to assess and analyse the
systems' key functions and performance under near-
"Australia lent itself particularly to the project since
it's only here that the necessary climatic and near-oper-
ational conditions in summer are encountered within
reasonably close proximity to each other," he said.
Lt-Col Heydt said extreme cold-weather testing
would be conducted later in the year in Norway.
Climate suits Germans
Big wheels: Master Sergeant Rainer Janssen from the German Army shows Cfn Chris Wright, Cpl Darren Hann and LCpl Nathan
Townley the finer points on a Boxer multi-role armoured vehicle.
Truck decision closer
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